Tory MP 'sorry' for twine remark

Rory Stewart
Image caption Rory Stewart said he was highlighting issues of rural poverty

A Tory MP who suggested some of his constituents held up their trousers with bits of string has apologised.

Rory Stewart was quoted as saying: "Some areas around here are pretty primitive, people holding up their trousers with bits of twine...".

He does not dispute the quote in the Scottish Sun.

He is challenging a Sunday Mirror headline which says he called his Penrith and the Border constituents "primitives".

A spokesman for the MP said he was highlighting the rural poverty in his area, not commenting on the individuals who live there.

On Sunday he wrote on his blog: "I meant that there are areas in Cumbria where people lack things, taken for granted in cities, and that these areas need more investment and more public services.

"It was never a judgement on people."

Mr Stewart is threatening to complain to the Press Complaints Commission about the coverage of his comments in the Sunday Mirror.

On his blog, he said: "The Sunday Mirror's misrepresentation of my words is an insult to the hard-working people of Cumbria.

"I am investigating raising it with the Press Complaints Commission.

"I remain very sorry for any hurt that this misrepresentation may have caused."

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